IIT(ISM) develops ventilator adapter
A team of reverse engineering laboratory of the mechanical engineering department of IIT(ISM) has developed ventilator adapters that will enable more than one person to use a single ventilator simultaneously in a hospital.
The development comes at a time medical professionals across the country are complaining about the shortage of ventilators, which are crucial in the treatment of a critical coronavirus patients.
The three-member team headed by A.R Dixit, a professor in the mechanical engineering department, developed the adapters within a week by using the 3D printing facility.
The other members of the team were laboratory superintendent (technical) Ashish Kumar and research scholar of mechanical engineering department Ratnesh Kumar.
“One of the ventilator adapters having a 1:2 configuration, which lets doctors provide respiratory support to two patients simultaneously through a single ventilator, has been provided to Patliputra Medical College and Hospital (PMCH) yesterday (Thursday),” Dixit said.
He said another ventilator adapter with 1:4 configuration enables four persons to use a single ventilator at one go and might be provided to PMCH if needed.
Dixit said the adapters were equipped with flow controllers of various sizes to cater to the patients requiring different levels of respiratory support. “Though the technique can be to used to develop an adapter of a 1:8 configuration (that lets eight persons use the same ventilator), monitoring the specific flow for each patient in such cases will become a big challenge,” Dixit said.
The 3D printing machine, which is available with the reverse engineering department, is being used worldwide to develop personnel protective equipment and other medical gear such as valves and splitters in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The concept of developing the adapter by using the 3D printing facility was first reported in 2006 in the society of Academic Emergency Medicine,” Dixit said, adding that the technique was successfully used by Dr Kevin Menes of Sunrise Hospital at Las Vegas in 2017.
Dean (research and development) of IIT(ISM) professor Shalivahan appreciated the efforts of the students. “IIT(ISM) is also helping the health department by providing free sanitisers prepared by the institute to PMCH,” he said.
Dr U.K. Ojha, the head of the medicine department at PMCH, said they would check the efficacy of the adapter within a couple of days.
Sources in IIT(ISM) said the institute was also preparing a sanitising tunnel that would disinfect a person who passes through it.